When Steroids Become Life Savers

Today, my eldest son’s school nurse called me up and informed me that I needed to bring him to the doctor since she can hear a lot of wheezing from his chest, and he was coughing unstoppably. Upon hearing these,  I had to inform my workmates that I needed to take a few hours off from work to bring Lean Raphael to a pulmonologist ASAP.  He has been coughing for days now and only had carbocisteine and cough expectorant to relieve him plus the eucalyptus oil massage that we apply on his chest and back. Today, it developed into a bad asthma attack.

Nebulizer: Asthma patients’ indispensable buddy (photo courtesy of Alibaba.com)

Ughh. It must be the dust and smoke that got the best of him and his tired lungs, even if he nebulized himself this morning.

Ok, so, what struck me most during our consultation with the accommodating lady doctor, was when she mentioned that my son needed to take some steroids (Prednisone, specifically) for five days to help clear his lungs’ airway inflammation. She patiently explained that nebulization alone is not enough to relieve him of asthma.

Suddenly, Lean said out of nowhere,  ” Doc, aren’t steroids bad for us??”

Prednisone: A “helpful” steriod for the asthmatics

The pulmonologist smiled and explained that the bad effects of steroids can only be felt if taken for a long period of time (6 months or longer). My son must have read stuff about athletes getting caught and being disqualified from sports competition due to steroids abuse. The doctor reassured him that the benefits of steroids intake for five days outweigh my son’s ‘so-called fears’, and that the restful sleep it will give him, minus the coughs, wheezing and chest tightness is more valuable.

I can no longer hear him coughing right now, thank God. Thanks for the wonders of medical science.